Tip it, Kathie, tip it!

NBC show co-hosts Hoda Kotb, left, and Kathie Lee Gifford on the fourth hour of the “Today” show in New York. Gifford has launched her own wine label offering Gifft chardonnay and a Gifft red blend. (AP Photo/NBC, Peter Kramer)

Even though the fourth hour of the “Today” show might as well be called “Thinking and Drinking with Kathie and Hoda,” NBC does have standards, don’tcha know.

Every morning, Kathie Lee Gifford and Hoda Kotb host “Today’s Talk” accompanied by two sizable goblets of wine. However, the network asked Gifford not to plug her new wine label, Gifft. Gifford is promoting two wines, a red blend and a chardonnay, in a partnership with Scheid Family Wines of Monterey, Calif.

“They let me announce it and then they’ve asked us to please not discuss it right now,” Gifford told the Associated Press. “We’re in the middle of the big takeover of a major corporation. I think they just want to be — and rightfully so — very careful. Everybody wants to dot i’s and cross t’s and you notice the wine is still sitting there but they’ve just asked me to be a little careful while they’re under great scrutiny and I’m happy to do that.”

Gifford says the hosts aren’t actually a couple of lushes, and that the glasses are really just there for visual effect.

“That’s been outrageously satirized — the amount,” she said. “It sits there.”

To be fair, drinking has become something of an integral theme to the hour.

So much so that they’re even accompanied by booze and booze accouterments when they visit other shows:

Soraya Nadia McDonald covers arts, entertainment and culture for the Washington Post with a focus on race and gender issues.



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Fred Barbash · April 2, 2014